Mother Knows Best

Femi puts an old teapot between us. It whispers steam, conjures memory. Talldark Everafter When I was little Mum loved the game as much as me, headscarves, wide staring eyes, the sombre room. The anticipation. Femi smiles, her eyes bright. My heart quickens. Breathless, the air all possibility and my mind reeling, could it be? It was the magic of the scrying I craved. ‘Time needs time, girl,’ Mum would say, agitating the pot. Then the tea’s bitter tang, abracadabra, the up-ended cup and tell me, tell me. Her witch’s croak, her dazzling generalisations. Were they real? Opposite Femi’s lovely smile I reach for the pot, my tongue flooded with the need to know. She stays my hand, her fingers lingering. Talldark Everafter But no prince for you ‘Let it steep,’ she says. ‘Time needs time.’ Her lips gently brushing mine. And I always thought Mum was a faker.
Van Demal
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